The United States Fish and Wildlife Service made a formal recommendation to list the bumble bees as endangered species. Unfortunately, in the past two decades, 90 percent of these bees has disappeared. The authorities made the recommendation after they have seen studies which showed that bumble bees are threatened by disease, habitat loss, human activity and climate change.
If the proposition will be approved, there would be the first bee listed as endangered in the United States. This is another evidence that human activity is harmful even for species which were considered to be safe. To understand better the situation, you should know that bumble bees used to be present in more than 28 states and also in Canada. At the moment, there are a dozen states where we can find them and the areas are smaller than they used to be.
It is very hard for biologists to count the bumble bees because they are not like honey bees. People can’t put them in boxes and count. These bees are wild and it is more difficult to keep track of them, but what we know for sure is that they are in a real danger. The last count was made 16 years ago, so it is possible that some populations disappeared during this period of time.
The bumble bees are one of the 4 000 species of bees that can be found in North America. They are used in commercial farming because they are stronger than honey bees, Their size allows them to get a higher vibration from the flowers, so they are helping us to have better fruit harvests.
They live in small colonies, with no more than 500 individuals. What is very interesting about them is that they do not make honey, especially because they are not able to survive during winter. People should not be afraid of them because they rarely sting and they do not have big colonies as protection.
The fact that they do not have protection could be one of the reasons why they are now proposed as an endangered species. The bumble bees are threatened mostly because of human activity. Biologist wants to help them to recover by creating a safe habitat and providing flowers for them.
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